When an author sets out to write a fantasy world, it’s important to make sure readers understand the world you’re building and the characters in it. Often times there are so many things happening, it’s easy for readers to get lost amidst the chaos. One of my worries when writing my Gifted worlds is that there are so many powers, it might confuse people. To fix that, I’m in the process of making a “Gift Glossary” of sorts, a list and explanation of the gifts I talk about in my books. While many of them are from the Donovan Circus series, I’ve pulled a few from the Super Nova book to show that not all gifts are the same (and that while I might use the same gift in two different books, they’re used in different ways since each gift is unique). When I say I’ve “invented” the gifts, I’m by no means claiming them all for my own creation – I’ve taken many ideas already in existence and twisted them to make them unique to my world-building.
Before the nerds start in on me (I can call them that because I’m one of them), yes, I do acknowledge and accept that my world is similar to that of the X-Men. However, there are differences to our worlds, first and foremost because I don’t want to be sued and secondly because…well, I like original stuff. Gifts in my world are magic-based and nothing to do with DNA structure. People get their gifts through their families (genetics), but that’s as close as it gets. Think of it more as fantasy than science fiction. Also, the gifted folks in my world only get that one gift – no true gifted being can have more than one. No exceptions. Each gift is also very unique – for example, Finley from Gifted is a Shapeshifter, but he can only turn into other humans, while others may only turn into animals. No cross shifting is allowed. There are rules for other gifts, too, such as different levels and skills of gifts. I explain this a little in Gifted, when Lucy is explaining to Delilah how different Firestarters can be.
My plan is to have the Gift Glossary up this week – at least, as much as I have so far. You’ve only read one book about the gifted world and you can imagine how many different gifts there are in the circus alone, but I’m just getting started. I created a couple new ones for Super Nova and I’ve barely tapped into the world of powers that could exist. There are literally thousands of ways to go about creating new gifts and I love the creativity I can use behind each power.
After reading Gifted, my buddy Rodney suggested a great gift for me to use in future books – I loved the concept so much that I’m including a character with that gift named Rodney in the next circus adventure! I love hearing new ideas and twists on powers that I might not think of otherwise. I’ve got the standard ones like telepathy, shapeshifting, and telekinesis, but I also love inventing ones like Firestarters, Transporters, and Influencers (which of course you know all about since you’ve read Gifted by now, right?).
Of course, I really want to hear what YOU think. What say you, friends? Got any fun, unique powers for me? If you want to stick around to check out the glossary, I’ll have that up later this week so you can see what I have so far and maybe suggest your own. Keep in mind I may already have a few stashed up my sleeve or am toying around with, as well as that each gift is unique to the individual, even though a large group of people have it. If I get enough response, I’d love to turn it into a contest on Facebook – the suggestion with the most likes would get a character named after them – with that superpower – in the next Donovan Circus book!